By Jacque Harper
Halleluiah!! More of God’s Word in the hands of the people of Papua New Guinea in the village of Gonoa.
When Bob and I arrived in Papua New Guinea at age 58 in 2000 we wondered if we would be able to see any of the work completed as we knew it was a long process and we were already “old”. Within a few months we were able to fly out to a village to see a scene very similar to this one. God’s Word in their language had arrived in their village!!! Now at age 71 and back in PNG for a second round, it is still an exciting day for us and we know so much more about the difficulties and blessing of this complex work. Groups working with Bible Translation in our province strive hard not to overlap in our work areas and have a general plan how to accomplish the large task ahead all working together.
The first dedication we saw was with the Melanesian Evangelical Churches of Christ and PBT had much to do with the publication. This one pictured was done by Wycliffe / SIL. One family had started this latest work in 1976 but was unable to finish due to poor health so they found another family to take over in 1996. It was great to see that the initiating couple was able to come and be a part of this celebration time. PBT has had two New Testament dedications since 2000 and three others are nearing completion. Many individual books of the Bible have been printed as completed and audio work is being done as well. We also have increased our village work by having “group directed programs” where we have the national men and women being trained to do the actual translation and our personnel being the consultants. The PNG men and women are already expert speakers of their own language so that helps to prevent some of the problems that arise with our personnel not knowing the language extremely well for many years of the work.
We’re so thankful that we are able to be of service each day, helping our co-workers to accomplish their part of the work here in Madang to get God’s Word to the Bibleless people of this country. Halleluiah!!
Bob and Jacque Harper minister through Technical Services and share the gift of encouragement.